Charles I of Anjou
Thereafter, he claimed the island, though his power was restricted to the peninsular possessions of the kingdom, with his capital at Naples. Charles was the child and youngest son of Louis VIII of France and Blanche of Castile. He conquered the Kingdom of Sicily from the Hohenstaufen and acquired lands in the eastern Mediterranean, the War of the Sicilian Vespers forced him to abandon his plans to reassemble the Latin Empire. By marriage to Beatrice of Provence, heiress of Raymond Berengar IV of Provence, he was Count of Provence, in 1247, his brother Louis IX made him Count of Anjou and Maine, as appanages of the French crown. By conquest and self-proclamation, he became King of Albania in 1272, by the testament of William II of Villehardouin, he inherited the Principality of Achaea in 1278. Charles was born in March 1227, four months after the death of his father, like his immediate older brother, Philip Dagobert, he did not receive a county as appanage, as had their older brothers. In 1232, his brothers Philip Dagobert and John, Count of Anjou and Maine, Charles became the next in line to receive the Counties, but was formally invested only in 1247.
The affection of his mother Blanche seems largely to have bestowed upon his brother Louis. The self-reliance this engendered in Charles may account for the drive, upon his accession as Count of Provence and Forcalquier in 1246, Charles rapidly found himself in difficulties. Furthermore, while Provence was technically a part of the Burgundy and hence of the Holy Roman Empire, recent counts had governed with a light hand, and the nobilities and cities had enjoyed great liberties. Three cities, Marseille and Avignon were Imperial cities technically separate from the county. In 1247, while Charles was in France to receive the counties of Anjou and Maine, the local nobility joined with Beatrice, unfortunately for Charles, he had promised to join his brother on the Seventh Crusade. For the time being, Charles compromised with Beatrice, allowing her to have Forcalquier, rich Provence provided the funds that supported his wider career. His rights as landlord were, on the whole, of recent establishment, from the Church, unlike his brothers in the north, he received virtually nothing.
Charles agents were efficient, the towns were prosperous, the peasants were buying up the duties of corvée and establishing self-governing consulats in the villages, Charles sailed with the rest of the Crusaders from Aigues-Mortes in 1248 and fought at Damietta and in the struggle around Mansourah, Egypt. However, his piety does not seem to have matched that of his brother, during his absence, open rebellion had broken out in Provence. Charles moved to suppress it, and Arles, Marseille held out until July 1252, but sued for peace. Charles imposed a lenient peace, but insisted on the recognition of his full rights, in November 1252, the death of his mother Blanche of Castile caused him to go north to Paris and assume the joint regency of the kingdom with his brother Alphonse
Blanche of France, Infanta of Castile
Blanche of France was a daughter of King Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence, and sister of King Philip III of France and Queen Isabella of Navarre. Blanche was born in 1253 in Jaffa, County of Jaffa and Ascalon during the Seventh Crusade led by her father and they had four sons and three daughters. Ferdinand, who married Juana Núñez de Lara, called la Palomilla, Lady of Lara and Herrera, daughter of Juan Núñez I de Lara and they had one son and three daughters. One daughter, Blanca de La Cerda y Lara, was the mother-in-law of King Henry II of Castile, ferdinand predeceased his father in 1275 at Ciudad Real. Blanche and Ferdinands sons did not inherit the throne of their grandfather, since their uncle, blanches brother Philip warned Sancho that he would invade Castile on behalf of his two nephews. Blanche left Castile never to return and her sons were sent to live with their grandmother Violant of Aragon who had them sent to the fortress of Játiva so they would be safe from Sancho. Blanche died at the Monastère des Clarisses de l’Ave Maria, in Paris, in 1323
Philip I of France
Philip I, called the Amorous, was King of the Franks from 1060 to his death. His reign, like that of most of the early Capetians, was long for the time. The monarchy began a modest recovery from the low it reached in the reign of his father and he added to the royal demesne the Vexin, Philip was born 23 May 1052 at Champagne-et-Fontaine, the son of Henry I and his wife Anne of Kiev. Unusual at the time for Western Europe, his name was of Greek origin, although he was crowned king at the age of seven, until age fourteen his mother acted as regent, the first queen of France ever to do so. Baldwin V of Flanders acted as co-regent, following the death of Baldwin VI of Flanders, Robert the Frisian seized Flanders. Baldwins wife, Richilda requested aid from Philip, who defeated Robert at the battle of Cassel in 1071, Philip first married Bertha in 1072. Although the marriage produced the heir, Philip fell in love with Bertrade de Montfort. He repudiated Bertha and married Bertrade on 15 May 1092, in 1094, he was excommunicated by Hugh of Die, for the first time, after a long silence, Pope Urban II repeated the excommunication at the Council of Clermont in November 1095.
In France, the king was opposed by Bishop Ivo of Chartres, Philip appointed Alberic first Constable of France in 1060. A great part of his reign, like his fathers, was spent putting down revolts by his power-hungry vassals, in 1077, he made peace with William the Conqueror, who gave up attempting the conquest of Brittany. In 1082, Philip I expanded his demesne with the annexation of the Vexin, in 1100, he took control of Bourges. It was at the aforementioned Council of Clermont that the First Crusade was launched, Philip at first did not personally support it because of his conflict with Urban II. Philips brother Hugh of Vermandois, was a major participant, Philip died in the castle of Melun and was buried per request at the monastery of Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire – and not in St Denis among his forefathers. He was succeeded by his son, Louis VI, whose succession was, according to Abbot Suger, Philip‘s children with Bertha were, married Hugh I of Champagne before 1097 and then, after her divorce, to Bohemund I of Antioch in 1106
Louis I, Duke of Bourbon
Louis I, called the Lame was Count of Clermont-en-Beauvaisis and La Marche and the first Duke of Bourbon. Louis was born in Clermont-en-Beauvaisis, the son of Robert, Count of Clermont, Louis mother was Beatrix of Burgundy, heiress of Bourbon and a granddaughter of Hugh IV, Duke of Burgundy. He fought on the side in the Battle of the Golden Spurs and in the Battle of Mons-en-Pévèle. In 1310, he was made Grand Chambrier of France, in 1327, Charles IV of France persuaded him to exchange the County of Clermont for that of La Marche, and elevated Bourbon to a duchy-peerage. However, Clermont was restored to him by Philip VI of France in 1331 and he belonged to Philip VIs small circle of trusted advisors. Duke Louis is reported to have been mentally unstable, in particular suffering from nervous breakdowns. He was buried in the church of the Couvent des Jacobins in Paris. In 1310, Louis married Mary of Avesnes, daughter of John II of Avesnes, Count of Hainaut and they had eight children, Peter I, Duke of Bourbon, married Isabella of Valois, had issue.
Only her first marriage produced surviving children, Philip James James I, Count of La Marche, killed at the Battle of Brignais, from whom the royal Bourbons descend. Beatrice of Bourbon, married first at Vincennes in 1334 John of Luxembourg, King of Bohemia as his second wife, married in 1315 Agnès of Chastellus, between 1330 and 1333 Isabelle of Chastelperron, Jeannette, bâtarde de Bourbon, married in 1310 to Guichard of Chastellus. Louis is a character in Les Rois maudits, a series of French historical novels by Maurice Druon. He was portrayed by Robert Nogaret in the 1972 French miniseries adaptation of the series, de la Thaumassière, Gaspard Thaumas, Histoire de Berry, Vol.3, Imprimerie et Lithographie de A. Jollet,1868. The Encyclopedia Americana, a library of universal knowledge, Vol.4, J. D. Lyon Company, New York,1919
Isabella of France, Queen of Navarre
Isabella of France was a daughter of Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence. She was married to Theobald II of Navarre, eldest son of Theobald I of Navarre, isabelle became Queen consort of Navarre. Louis IX wanted to make peace with Navarre so he married Isabella off to Theobald, the Archbishop of Rouen celebrated the marriage between Isabella and Theobald II, King of Navarre and Count of Champagne, on 6 April 1255 in Melun. The bridegroom was 16 and the bride 14 years old, together with her husband and her father, the very pious Isabella travelled with the Eighth Crusade in July 1270. Her father died there in August of the same year, then, in December, Isabellas husband died of an epidemic while in Sicily. After the deaths of both her father and husband, Isabella returned to France and lived in Provence until her only two months in 1271. Isabella is buried next to her husband in Provins, list of Navarrese royal consorts French monarchs family tree Media related to Isabella of France at Wikimedia Commons Marek, Miroslav
Louis VIII of France
Louis VIII the Lion was King of France from 1223 to 1226. He claimed the title King of England from 1216 to 1217, Louis VIII was born in Paris, the son of King Philip II of France and Isabelle of Hainaut, from whom he inherited the County of Artois. While Louis VIII only briefly reigned as king of France, he was a leader in his years as crown prince. During the First Barons War of 1215-17 against King John of England, after his victory at the Battle of Roche-au-Moine in 1214, he invaded southern England and was proclaimed King of England by rebellious barons in London on the 2 June 1216. He was never crowned and renounced his claim after being excommunicated and repelled, in 1217, Louis started the conquest of Guyenne, leaving only a small region around Bordeaux to Henry III of England. Louiss short reign was marked by an intervention using royal forces into the Albigensian Crusade in southern France that decisively moved the conflict towards a conclusion and he died in 1226 and was succeeded by his son Louis IX.
In summer 1195, a marriage between Louis and Eleanor of Brittany, niece of Richard I of England, was suggested for an alliance between Philip II and Richard, but it failed and this led to a sudden deterioration in relations between Richard and Philip. On 23 May 1200, at the age of 12, Louis was married to Blanche of Castile, daughter of King Alfonso VIII of Castile and Eleanor of England, the marriage could only be concluded after prolonged negotiations between King Philip II of France and Blanches uncle John. In 1214, King John of England began his campaign to reclaim the Duchy of Normandy from Philip II. John was optimistic, as he had built up alliances with Holy Roman Emperor Otto IV, Count Renaud of Boulogne. Johns plan was to split Philips forces by pushing north-east from Poitou towards Paris, while Otto and Ferdinand, supported by the Earl of Salisbury, marched south-west from Flanders. Whereas Philip II took personal command of the front against the emperor and his allies. The first part of the campaign went well for the English, with John outmanoeuvring the forces under the command of Prince Louis, John besieged the castle of Roche-au-Moine, a key stronghold, forcing Louis to give battle against Johns larger army.
The local Angevin nobles refused to advance with the king, left at something of a disadvantage, shortly afterwards, Philip won the hard-fought Battle of Bouvines in the north against Otto and Johns other allies, bringing an end to Johns hopes of retaking Normandy. In 1215, the English barons rebelled against the unpopular King John in the First Barons War, the barons offered the throne to Prince Louis, who landed unopposed on the Isle of Thanet in eastern Kent, England, at the head of an army on 21 May 1216. There was little resistance when the prince entered London, and Louis was proclaimed king at Old St Pauls Cathedral with great pomp and celebration in the presence of all of London. Even though he was not crowned, many nobles, as well as King Alexander II of Scotland on behalf of his English possessions, on 14 June 1216, Louis captured Winchester and soon controlled over half of the English kingdom. But just when it seemed that England was his, King Johns death in October 1216 caused many of the barons to desert Louis in favour of Johns nine-year-old son
Marie of France, Countess of Champagne
Marie of France was a French princess and Countess consort of Champagne. She was regent of the county of Champagne in 1179-1181, and she was the elder daughter of King Louis VII of France and Duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine. Her parents marriage was annulled in 1152, and custody of Marie and her sister, both Louis and Eleanor remarried quickly, with Eleanor becoming Queen of England as the spouse of King Henry II. Marie had numerous half-siblings, including kings Philip II of France and John, in 1160, when Louis married Adele of Champagne, he betrothed Marie and Alix to Adeles brothers. After her betrothal, Marie was sent to the abbey of Avenay in Champagne for her education, in 1164, Marie married Henry I, Count of Champagne. While her husband was away, Maries father died and her half-brother, Philip and he confiscated his mothers dower lands and married Isabelle of Hainaut, who was previously betrothed to Maries eldest son. This prompted Marie to join a party of disgruntled nobles—including Queen Adele, relations between Marie and her royal brother improved.
Her husband died soon after his return from the Holy Land, now a widow with four young children, Marie considered marrying Philip of Flanders, but the engagement was broken off suddenly for unknown reasons. Marie resumed regency when her son went on Crusade, governing Champagne from 1190 to Henrys death in 1197. She retired to the nunnery of Fontaines-les-Nones near Meaux, and died there in 1198, on 25 June 1562, the Huguenots took over the town of Meaux and devastated many edifices, including the Cathedral. Backed up by Parisian refugees, the Huguenots of the Meaux region called a meeting in the district and chose a leader, Louis de Meaux. They took the keys to the town, put guards at the gates and they attacked the sculpted stone decorations and liturgical furniture, it is on this occasion that the tomb of Marie de Champagne, in the choir, was destroyed. Marie was a patron of literature, including Andreas Capellanus, who served in her court and she was literate in French and Latin and maintained her own library.
A deep affection existed between Marie and her half-brother King Richard, and his celebrated poem Ja nuns hons pris, Eleanor of Aquitaine and Lady,2002 Evergates, Theodore. Aristocratic Women in Medieval France,1999
Henry of France, Archbishop of Reims
Henry of France, Bishop of Beauvais, Archbishop of Reims, was the third son of Louis the Fat, King of France and his second wife Adélaide de Maurienne. As the third son of the King Henry was destined for a place in the church from an age, tonsured at the age of thirteen. He advanced by stages through the hierarchy, probably with a view to preparing him for a position of the highest rank. In 1146, however, he was converted from his life as a wealthy secular cleric by St. Bernard of Clairvaux. Pope Eugenius III, himself a former Cistercian monk, speaks of Henry in 1147 as humbly washing dishes at Clairvaux, in 1149, on the death of Bishop Odo III of Beauvais, the cathedral chapter, persuaded by Bernard of Clairvaux, elected Henry as their bishop. Henry was ill-prepared for the political responsibilities of his new office, King Louis backed the town, while Henry was supported by his younger brother Robert, Count of Dreux. The conflict was settled by Pope Eugenius III in 1151. In 1161 Henry became Archbishop of Reims, succeeded at Beauvais by Bartholomew of Montcornet, Henry organised an important church council at Reims in 1164.
He again found himself in conflict with the populace of his city, the revolt was suppressed and Archbishop Henry devoted himself to beautifying and fortifying Reims, which included building the castles of Septsaulx and Cormicy. “Henri de France, ” in Alfred Baudrillart, et al. eds, dictionnaire d’histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques, XXIII, cols. Henri de France, archevêque de Reims, “Henri de France et Louis VII. L’Évêque cistercien et son frère le roi, ” [in Les Serviteurs de l’État au Moyen Âge, actes du XXIXe Congrès de la Société des historiens médiévistes de l’enseignement supérieur public. Ludwig Falkenstein, “Alexandre III et Henri de France, Conformités et conflits, ” in, Rolf Grosse, dietrich Lohrmann, “Autour d’un acte d’Henri, évêque de Beauvais, concernant trois granges de Froidmont, ” in Michel Parisse, ed. A Propos des actes d’évêques, Hommage à Lucie Fossier, Presses Universitaires de Nancy,1991, pp. 161–167
House of Capet
The House of Capet or the Direct Capetians, called the House of France, or simply the Capets, ruled the Kingdom of France from 987 to 1328. It was the most senior line of the Capetian dynasty – itself a derivative dynasty from the Robertians, historians in the 19th century came to apply the name Capetian to both the ruling house of France and to the wider-spread male-line descendants of Hugh Capet. It was not a contemporary practice and they were sometimes called the third race of kings, the Merovingians being the first, and the Carolingians being the second. The name is derived from the nickname of Hugh, the first Capetian King, the direct succession of French kings, father to son, from 987 to 1316, of thirteen generations in almost 330 years, was unparallelled in recorded history. The direct line of the House of Capet came to an end in 1328, with the death of Charles IV, the throne passed to the House of Valois, descended from a younger brother of Philip IV. He proceeded to make it hereditary in his family, by securing the election and coronation of his son, Robert II, the throne thus passed securely to Robert on his fathers death, who followed the same custom – as did many of his early successors.
Louis VIII – the eldest son and heir of Philip Augustus – married Blanche of Castile, a granddaughter of Aliénor of Aquitaine and Henry II of England. In her name, he claimed the crown of England, invading at the invitation of the English Barons and these lands were added to the French crown, further empowering the Capetian family. Louis IX – Saint Louis – succeeded Louis VIII as a child, unable to rule for several years, the government of the realm was undertaken by his mother, at the death of Louis IX, France under the Capetians stood as the pre-eminent power in Western Europe. Unfortunately for the Capetians, the proved a failure. Philip IV had married Jeanne, the heiress of Navarre and Champagne, by this marriage, he added these domains to the French crown. More importantly to French history, he summoned the first Estates General – in 1302 – and in 1295 established the so-called Auld Alliance with the Scots and it was Philip IV who presided over the beginning of his Houses end. The first quarter of the century saw each of Philips sons reign in rapid succession, Louis X, Philip V, Louis – unwilling to release his wife and return to their marriage – needed to remarry.
He arranged a marriage with his cousin, Clementia of Hungary and this proved the case, but the boy – King John I, known as the Posthumous – died after only 5 days, leaving a succession crisis. Eventually, it was decided based on several reasons that Joan was ineligible to inherit the throne, which passed to the Count of Poitiers. Marie died in 1324, giving birth to a stillborn son, the last of the direct Capetians were the daughters of Philip IVs three sons, and Philip IVs daughter, Isabella. Since they were female, they could not transmit their Capetian status to their descendants, the wife of Edward II of England, Isabella overthrew her husband in favour of her son and her co-hort, only for Edward III to execute Mortimer and have Isabella removed from power. Joan, the daughter of Louis X, succeeded on the death of Charles IV to the throne of Navarre, she now being – questions of paternity aside – the unquestioned heiress